One weapon that had a significant effect on battle and trench warfare was the machine gun. The machine gun was a fully automatic gun that could fire many bullets very quickly. It had a large magazine and a lot of ammunition so it could fire constantly for minutes on end. The machine gun was a large and heavy weapon so it was not carried around or moved a lot. It was used mainly in the defence since when one trench would rush another, they would run in a line. This meant that the machine gunners could easily ‘mow’ down the enemy forces without having to be very accurate. This weapon gave the defensive side a much larger advantage than the attacking side because the defensives could kill the attackers much faster than the attackers could kill the defensives.
Gas attacks was an effective, strategic but devastating way of attacking. This is because it could easily kill the enemy; it was toxic and would kill them quickly. The gas is heavier than air, so it would sink into the trenches and kill everything in them. The gas would however kill all living things that it would come across: plants, animals and even bugs. It was also difficult to set up, since there would have to be a row of gas canisters that were to be opened at the same time, and the wind had to be blowing in the right direction so that it would reach the enemy’s trenches and not go into your own. When the conditions were right, the gas was one of the most effective ways of taking out many people at once and changed warfare. After gas, war became chemical warfare. All sides would use gas to try to kill the enemies and it destroyed landscapes and environments.